Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/04/17/letters_1704/
Blu-Ray disks hacked by sweet talking teenagers
While politics and humour are banned
Letters Fury swept the blogosphere today with accusations over how police and university authorities dealt with the shooting of 32 students at Virginia Tech University yesterday morning:
Mis-directed anger and frustration... Gotta blame someone and the killer is dead, so blame the university and cops. Perhaps they could have responded better, who really knows at this stage? How do you prepare and respond to these crazy events?
The reality is you rarely can stop a crazed killer before or while they are on these killing streaks. We live in a world that has gone mad. Get use to it because it's only gonna get worse.
The world really is mad if people think they can control teenagers' raging hormones:
Anyone who actually believes they can make a policy to reduce the sex drive of humans, especially when they finally find out what all the extra bits are really for, should be prohibited from serving in public office. It's enough that there's a species-wide hysteria surrounding JuJu, Allah, Jahwe, God and sundry fictional characters, actually denying humans the right to be human should be grounds for immediate dismissal.
The only thing that works is to be open and frank, to teach people to love their own bodies and that of others and to share pleasure responsibly. As long as we're going to be mock-squeamish about even mentioning the parts let alone naming them and how to use them, you might just as well burn the money in a stove for all the good it will do preventing humans who want to find out what's it all for to get their groove thing going.
NO other species on the planet has a problem with their sex drive, only Homer Saps feels the need to install guilt in its members about it.
"Get their groove thing going?" Enough said.
So nowadays when we're balding and stuck in our offices we're supposed to say "Damn, I wish I was 14.9 years old again..."
Hormonally challenged? From what I remember of my teenage years it was more like hormonally empowered or in many cases hormonally frustrated.
In many cases? Speaking from experience?
"23 per cent in both groups said they always used a condom, 17 per cent only sometimes using a condom, and four per cent never did."
And the rest used what? Wished upon a star? A sock?
The good news is that despite it being totally obvious that this was never going to work (the campaign, not the sock - although I'm fairly sure that wouldn't work either), despite it being totally obvious that any more money spent will be money spent very badly, nothing will prevent the wingnuts running this country from throwing billions more at this.
It's like that peculiarly popular trend spreading across the US, where fathers take their daughters out for the evening, make them pledge to abstinence until they're safely married (sort of like some medieval ritual where they agree to being owned by one person prior to being handed off to another).. then act all horrified when their charges engage in every form of sexual activity more thoroughly than those that steer well clear of these weirdo bashes.
Neither group showed more inclination than the other to use contraception, either. Of those who said they'd had sex in the last year, 23 per cent in both groups said they always used a condom, 17 per cent only sometimes using a condom, and four per cent never did.
What happened to the other 56%? Eunuchs? Prefer animals? Dead bodies perhaps?
There are some numbers missing, granted, but that's just sick.
And then this....out of nowhere...
What is is about GW that cause you lefties to be so filled with blind hatred and rage that you need to stab yourself in the eye with a pen to calm yourselves down. I wonder what you will do when he is no longer president. Who will become the focus of your hatred? I do hope you don't have any children or pets at that time. Or maybe you will be happy because hillary or Obama will make the world an instant utopia? Yeah right.
Moving on, Gary McKinnon lost his appeal last week and still faces extradition to the land of George Dubbya.
This 'biggest hack'; is that biggest in the way that Howard Marks was the biggest dope dealer in US history? (ie: Not at all - but it did get an extradition, so that's alright then.)
Can el Reg not start a petition on Mr. Blairs website to offer some counter-view to the "omg, he's so evil" mass media? The Reg clearly has a lot of readers and i'm sure you'd get a lot of support.
Perhaps the petition could read: "Do not extradite McKinnon for US political reasons". While he's committed a crime which he freely admits and should be punished accordingly, its sick for the US to use him as a pawn in their mass misinformation campaign in their 'war of terror' by destroying his life.
When you break into a computer system belonging to a foreign government that is called espionage. It is spying. You only have the say so of this individual to go on. As a community we have to hand out maximum sentences to nip this in the bud. There has to be an example of this kind of illegal activity having a penalty so others will not attempt this kind of childish and illegal behavior.
Hackers were characteristically busy last week, and discovered content protection keys that gave them unfettered access to Blu-Ray and HD-DVD content. Not that this is the first time the disks' security has been breached:
Ever since I learned about the authorisation keys, I wondered how long it would be until someone got their keys revoked. How long now, i wonder until someone finds a flaw in a major popular piece of commercial hardware like a £3k TV or £900 media centre and the entire piece of hardware gets revoked with no possibility of re-flashing, etc
As soon as a few tens of thousands of customers are affected by this I wonder how 'must-have' HD will be then...
I am surprised by the media buzz around this, after all what about Slysoft's AnyDVDHD which claims to circumvent HD and BlueRay protection using a different approach (i.e. not key grabs from memory), I would have thought that this would have been more of an 'issue' to the industry.
Not that i am complaining, I fully support the efforts of Slysoft in removing this non-fair-use protection of media content, When you have children, it should only be fair to make copies of purchased content, it doesn't take a 3 year old long to wreck a disc after all!
Everywhere you look on the net it mentions these 2 hackers and their efforts, but nowhere is AnyDVD mentioned, it just surprises me, thats all.
Anyway, you and the rest of The Register crew, keep up the good work.
Patching a buggy piece of Windows software is one thing, but deliberately destroying deployed hardware is another thing. Revoking the keys from a hacked hardware player (i.e. destroying Granny's BluRay player) would put the industry up against consumer protection legislation and tort law not to mention charges of criminal damage.
Sweets for my sweet, sugar for my password...Tired of trying to hack into systems without luck? Help is at hand in the favourable form of a chocolate bar:
As was pointed out last time someone published similar statistics; all this proves is that 26% of people are too stupid to make up a fake password in order to get free chocolate...
Sweets also made the news as reports suggest that mobiles top the priority list of yoof, ousting old school faves CDs, chocolate and cigarettes:
This story just proves that cellphones are entertainment for the clueless.
Sticking with entertainment, the spat between rival operators Virgin and Sky escalated with Virgin saying 'we'll see ya in court'.
About time Sky got the boot stuck into them. Bastards have been abusing their monopoly position for years.
They buy up the rights to sports (e.g. Super14 Rugby), ban others from showing or providing coverage of the games to people in the countries with the highest demand (e.g. UK) and then only show 2 or 3 of the 6 (Or 7 if no Byes) games a week. Most weeks you don't even get highlights.
I hope they get shafted good & proper.
Speaking of shafting, we received some criticism of our own. This, in response to news that Europe and the US sat down to discuss how to civilise the US war on terror:
US crusaders? Register's areas of expertise and proper journalism I come to The Register for technology news, with a focus on IT, networking, and digital media. The various science tidbits are also useful and interesting.
For these matters I think The Register, snarky attitude and all, is quite useful.
I find the incessant one-sided political drum beat created by items on the front page most annoying and inappropriate. I wouldn't count on National Geographic or NME (New Music Express?) to provide me with high quality technology news. Why should anyone expect that The Register has any particular expertise in world politics?
Of course those at The Register enjoy free speech, which should be the right of anyone. And everyone has political opinions. But it seems to me that those at The Register are taking unfair advantage of their captive audience by pummeling them with political propaganda that has little to do with the reason people come to the site in the first place.
Today's outrage is this sentence that leads off Mark Ballard's article...written, by the way, as a news item without any indication of it being an opinion column or editorial.
" Emissaries from the European Parliament arrived in Washington today with a message of restraint and fairplay for US crusaders in the "war on terror". "
The phase "war on terror" is put in scare-quotes indicating skepticism and irony. The phrase "US crusaders", however, is left unadorned. This phrase, of course, is very popular among the likes of Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri. The two word phrase references the genocide perpetrated by the Church in the middle ages, and encapsulates the al Qaeda lie that "America and the Jews" want to kill of Islam and its followers.
The combination of this phrase and quoting "war on terror" is an effective piece of deadly propaganda. It leaves the impression the writer agrees with bin Laden and company, and views the western claim of self-defense against terrorism as a lie.
My suggestion is that The Register avoid political issues not obviously and uniquely related to the realm of IT.
Failing that, political reporting should not editorialize. And if The Register cannot resist the impulse to take advantage of its platform to spout off on all manner of political opinionâ€¦political opinion should be restricted to clearly labeled editorial columns.
Thanks for listening,
p.s. Please resist the glib retort that George Bush once used the word "crusade" in reference to the US actions in the middle east. It was clearly the unfortunate use of the now generic sense of the word. It was quickly retractedâ€¦but was not even a mistake when properly understood. Bush no more intended to imply that this is a war of Christians against Moslems any more than the charity organization "Crusade of Mercy" does.
I first discovered The Register about 6 months ago when linked to it by an article from another web site. I thought it was a good source of quick tech info, cutting through the verbose offerings of more "official" sites such as EE News. I added a link to your site on my small tech company's web site and added The Reg to my morning reading during breakfast.
After many months of reading I'm having a couple of problems. The biggest problem is deciphering the headlines to determine whether it's worth reading. Remember, I'm reading this quickly during breakfast along with several other sites to get the tech news of the day. As I understand it the Reg is proud of it's creative bullet headlines, I wouldn't want to trample on that but I'm sure I've skipped over a good many articles because of the mind bending headlines that I have no time to mess with.
That leads to the next problem, which is that sometimes I'm not sure if I'm reading a tech news source or Punch. Humor is good but som! e of the subjects lead me to wonder if I should still link to your site on my web site because of childish or gross topics.
The third thing, and less important, is that I notice that Microsoft and the US government get pummeled regularly. I've used DOS so I have no great love of Microsoft, and I believe that governments should be questioned.
I guess I sometimes wondering if I'm reading tech info or a diatribe of some kind. Overall I like the Reg or I wouldn't bother suggesting how to improve it, I hope it will continue to improve. I'm sure there are a lot of people like myself who want to get tech news without reading volumes. Thanks, Frank L.
That's all for today. We'll be back - politics and humour free - on Friday. ®